With the return of Braun Strowman on Monday night, much to the delight of WWE fans, would the company do the unthinkable? Is it possible the match between Braun Stowman and Roman Reigns at the “Great Balls of Fire” pay-per-view lead to a double turn, finally hatching the “heel” character many of us have wanted to see for some time with Reigns jumping to the dark side?
It’s plausible and certainly something WWE needs to consider. Roman Reigns is not winning fans over with his character. While the former three-time WWE World Champion has looked strong in recent months and continues to headline PPV events, Braun Strowman received such a loud pop from the fans in his return – proving the former Wyatt Family neophyte is over as a superstar.
What is WWE waiting for? Make the move? Make the change? Make everything right in the wrestling world.
“This past Monday on RAW, Reigns automatically declared he would be the number one contender for The Universal Championship at SummerSlam,” writes Jay Sichler of Daily DDT. “This new sense of entitlement did not go over well with the crowd as Reigns continues to distance himself from the fans.”
It’s good to see Sichler and I are on the same page here. Reigns as a heel – with a connection to Samoa Joe – might be exactly what Reigns needs. The chorus of boos he hears every week would be warranted. If the fans in attendance at WWE events want to show their displeasure for the former Shield member, then give the fans what they want.
The fans influenced the direction of AJ Styles once he arrived at the Royal Rumble in 2016. This kind of “swerve” serves everyone’s best interest. Making Roman Reigns a top contender for any WWE belt has to have meaning. Feuds with Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose and Finn Balor down the line will increase fan acceptance. Most of all, the move gets Braun Strowman over more than he already is with the fan base.
Sichler makes a comparison that might be on the money in WWE circles.
“With the way, the fans have been treating these two now seems like the time that the company should flip these two stars. And with a brutal Ambulance match, the company could book the match in a way that fans get sympathetic for a monster like Strowman.
“This feud has a very similar style to the iconic feud of Bret Hart and Stone Cold Steve Austin that took place in late 1996-97. In the beginning of the feud, Hart was the hero with fans adoring him, while Austin was the villain who made it his mission to take down Hart.”
Since WWE has jumped to a New Era, while using some of the old formula of the Attitude Era and Ruthless Aggression to entice fans once again, this can work. The last time a double turn worked, Alberto Del Rio and Dolph Ziggler at WWE Payback in 2013. This would have a bigger impact than that scenario.
And a move like this, as bold as it is, sets the tone for destruction for both WWE superstars in the second half of 2017.